September 17, 2012

WABAR ~ A Birthday Celebration in Gangnam Style!

Oppa Gangnam Style, anyone?

There's no denial that Korean singer PSY's "Gangnam Style", with its addictive music and comical horse-riding dance, is making waves way beyond Korea. Its music video draws more than 130 million views from 220 countries around the world in less than two months! This is not counting the countless parody video clips that is being uploaded onto YouTube everyday.

I was not spared this globally-viral song when WABAR, a Korean-pop concept bar, is decided as the venue to hold a surprise birthday celebration for my friend, Joey. Gangnam Style was played throughout the night, sometimes even being repeated consecutively. Not a bad thing to some customers as they were cheering whenever it comes on. A good thing because the birthday gal like the song.

The stunning neon-lighted display of beer bottles captured my attention as I entered the bar. Very aptly decorated, as this is where you can enjoy Korean beer and Soju, as well as a wide variety of beer from around the world.

Korean music videos dominates here, instead of the ubiquitous sport matches usually played in bars. Numerous flat screen televisions adorned the walls, blaring the top K-pop hits of the moment.

WABAR also serves a variety of food ranging from Korean classics to western bar snacks. My friends, Alena, Jay and I decided to meet earlier and have dinner here, before the birthday gal and the rest of the gang arrives. The food menu is rather extensive for a bar. It would be helpful if it is segregated into sections like appetizers, mains, desserts, instead of having a long list of items numbered from 1 to 50. We ended up ordering a few popular items as recommended by the waiter.

Kimchi Pancake (S$12++)

No Korean meal is complete without kimchi. While being great on its own as a staple side dish, it can also be added into pancakes and pan-fried into a hearty snack. Unfortunately, the kimchi pancake here came out dry and hard instead of crispy.

Crazy Garlic Chicken (S$15++)

Garlic generously accompanied the chicken pieces, which is covered in a sweet and not-very-spicy sauce. Caressed by the gentle aroma of garlic, my hopes for this dish went up. It was dashed immediately when my teeth sank into the soggy chicken.

Samgyetang (S$15++)

This is a Korean classic which is not too classic here. The chicken here is prepared with ginseng, liquorice and garlic, but missing the glutinous rice. While the chicken is not as dry as it looks and falls off the bones easily, it couldn't save itself from drowning in its bland tasting soup.

Bossam (S$16+)

The Bossam (Braised Pork) came sliced in uneven thickness and was not tender nor well-marinated. The meat was tasteless with a strong pork smell.

The pork smell still came through very strongly even when wrapped in a fresh lettuce along with kimchi, hot bean paste and onion. I was hoping all these condiments can masked the smell but I was wrong. Very disappointed by the promising looking dish.

Magners Pear Cider (S$15++)

What makes the meal a lot more bearable is this Magners Pear Cider from Ireland. I managed to wash the food down with its crisp, light and refreshing taste.

Spotted this popcorn machine at the corner of the bar! Popcorn is freshly made and served with the drinks.

Despite a very bad start with dinner, we had a great celebration! The birthday gal was visibly touched by the surprise we've planned for her.

Joey likes ice cream. Joey likes cake. So we got her the best of both worlds... Ice Cream Cake! Midnight Delight from Cold Stone Creamery ~ Layer of moist devil’s food cake and chocolate ice cream wrapped in a rich fudge ganache! Doesn't that sounds amazingly yummy?

Here is the very pretty birthday gal (L), Joey, and Alena, the super friend (R) who coordinated the whole surprise.

To keep with the Gangnam Style theme, we were all dressed in black and gold to reflect the cool and classy image of a rich lifestyle.

We do feel very pampered by the great service here. Not only do they help us reserve the private room, they took the extra step of decorating it with the 'Happy Birthday' signage. They played a special birthday song when the cake is brought out, and pro-actively provide the cutlery without us asking. Oh, did I mention that the waiter served me a glass of ice water when I was waiting for my friends earlier as I was the first to arrive? He did it even though I did not request for it and had not ordered any food yet. I mean, can you even count the number of F&B establishments that are so stingy with water nowadays? I was impressed by all the little gestures which made us feel welcome.

This might not be a good place for food, but is certainly a great place to have a drink or celebration.

Maybe I was just unlucky that night to order all the wrong food items, but sometimes......

It's Not Just About The Food, It's About The Company.

Thanks to Joey, Alena, Ruth, Jay, Jason, Derek, Doris and Byron for the wonderful company!

A Very Blessed Birthday To Our Angel, Joey!!

Here's your favorite version of Gangnam Style for you!

Address: 62-64 Tanjong Pagar Road, Singapore 088483
Contact: +65  62247073
Opening Hours: 3pm - 3am Daily

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